One of the most common challenges in recruiting to community nursing roles is the lack of understanding from candidates on what community nursing is like in the UK.

While the core principles of the nursing profession are understood internationally, cultural and organisational differences can be significant between different countries, which requires a process of accommodation and adaptation from both employers and nurses arriving in a new country.

Many countries have a less developed community sector than in the UK, and less specialisation. The number of different teams and specialisms within community nursing may therefore appear initially overwhelming or at the least very confusing.

It is beneficial to have dedicated staff who are given training and support to communicate with applicants from overseas – taking into account the difference in time zones, being flexible with communication styles and language, and managing uncertainty. It is to be expected that new staff – who may be coming to the UK for the first time in their lives – will have a lot of questions and concerns.

Host Q&A webinars, offer and maintain regular contact with candidates, and refer people to the QNI webpages on community nursing roles – these are some of the things candidates have found useful.

Kent Community Health NHS FT and Sussex Community NHS FT have collaborated on gathering useful information about community roles in their IR Community Toolkit which can be downloaded below.

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